Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Today is Rare Diseases Day--spread the awareness

Some links: Many rare diseases have an orthopaedic involvement, so I get requests for information about rare diseases and come across articles about various syndromes. But seeing patients who live every day with these disorders is something altogether different, and I'm glad that in some small way, I can help with their care.

Friday, February 27, 2015

I know it's only 9 pm

but I have to get up early tomorrow and take friends their animals to the vet. So I'm calling it a night. Have a great weekend!


Listening to

Cool. Eerie, but cool...

Nearly Frozen Waves Captured On Camera By Nantucket Photographer

Check out the photographer's website for more. His name is Jonathan Nimerfroh.

Am I the only one who thinks it's lavender and gold???

The Science Of Why This Dress Looks Different Colors To Different People

I got a notification on my phone during lunch this afternoon

from a local TV news station, and as soon as I read 'Leonard Nimoy' my heart dropped in my chest. I realised he had died, had read he'd gone to the hospital recently, and I was so saddened by the news. But at least he did die at home, and he is hopefully at rest now. I watched my grandfather struggle for years with COPD, and my mother has it, too. It's a horrible illness, sucking your breath away bit by bit, like some sort of daemon. Mr Nimoy had smoked years and years ago, had quit 30 years prior to announcing his illness, and used that announcement as a teachable moment to urge others to not smoke. He had a great deal of warmth and dignity, and I will miss him. I loved him as Spock, of course, but I also was a great fan of the show 'In Search Of...', which explored mysterious topics such as the Bermuda Triangle or Bigfoot, with him narrating in his wonderful voice.

Leonard Nimoy, Spock of ‘Star Trek,’ Dies at 83

Alav HaSholom to him, and my condolences to his family and loved ones.

Interesting opinion piece on the value of natural history collections

Libraries of Life
Hidden behind the popular displays at many of your favorite natural history museums — in their basements, back rooms and, increasingly, off-site facilities — sit humanity’s most important libraries of life, holding not books but preserved animal and plant specimens, carefully collected over centuries by thousands of scientist explorers.

These specimen collections serve as the bedrock of our system of taxonomy — the rules by which we classify life — and are integral to our understanding of the threats, origins and interrelationships of biodiversity. And yet, thanks to budget cutbacks, misplaced ethical critiques, public misconceptions and government regulations that restrict scientists while failing to restrict environmental exploitation, the continued maintenance and growth of these libraries is in danger.

Though most visitors never know they are there, natural history collections are as critical to modern biologists as libraries are to journalists and historians. Indeed, like good literature, each museum specimen allows reinterpretation by every person who examines it.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

I've been away from the university for almost fifteen years

and the red tape is still annoying me. They got my account fixed, and I was able to bring up the right tab, but it will not give me an unofficial transcript, claiming no programs found. Sigh. Maybe it is because I started 30 years ago--I was at my dear alma mater for many years working on three degrees (getting two of them) and I think when all was said and done, I wound up with three undergraduate majors and a minor, with one class lacking for a fourth major. Oh, well. I may have to go the official transcript route for the next time it's requested by a prospective employer.

Was looking for something for Throwback Thursday on Facebook and found these

Me at age 3, in kindergarten, in junior high school, at my office, and hula hooping. :) It was fun to come across them.

So I went ahead and gave blood

and that went well. The folks were very nice, and took my iron level first before I filled the paperwork out. Apparently those children's complete chewable multivitamins help, as I was at a good level. All in all it took a little less than an hour. I think they separate the blood into three parts usually, so a donation can help save the lives of three people. If you've never donated, and can, or maybe haven't donated in awhile, consider it. With all the horrible winter weather lately, blood drives get cancelled, regular donors can't make it, etc. Every bit helps. It's actually quite easy to do.

I went over to my friend's house afterwards, visited for awhile, and we watched an episode of 'Hart of Dixie'. Now we're at the appointment, so I'm typing on my laptop with the hotspot from the phone going.

It's been pretty nice to have a day away from work today. It's been a bit leisurely, even with times to be at various places. I'll be back at work tomorrow, though. But then in a couple of weeks there's the Chicago trip, so that will be fun--three days of mostly vacation with some meetings, too.

Speaking of Chicago, I brought my Fodor's book with me. I may see about looking through other places in the Loop and nearby environs that I can go to while I'm there. I'm sure there are restaurants, etc. I don't really have the money to go to the Adler Planetarium and the Field Museum, although it would be nice to. I went to a planetarium in Wichita years ago as part of a school trip and really enjoyed it, and of course there's the Hubble Planetarium in nearby Richmond at Eastern Kentucky University, which I haven't been to before. But I definitely want to do the Field Museum.

That was incredibly easy

I got over to the hospital at 8:30, and since I'd already pre-registered, they just needed me to sign a couple of sheets of paper and give them my ID and insurance card to verify. Then I waited just about five minutes after being taken back to radiology. The CT scan itself was much easier than an MRI--I didn't feel closed in (of course, they were just doing my sinuses), and was able to stay still, except for breathing. I got back to the waiting room by 9:01 and the longest wait was actually the one for my disc with the scan on it that I have to take to my doctor. But I was still out of there before 9:20. I could have actually gotten to work by 9:30 or 9:45. But a friend has an appointment of his own today at 2 pm, so I took the day off. I really thought the scan, or at least the waiting, would take longer.

So now I'm eating some plain low-fat Greek yoghurt with raspberries and blackberries because 1) I haven't eaten yet today and am a bit peckish, and 2) I'd like to give blood, especially since I have time now. So the plan is to finish breakfast and then drive over to Mapleleaf to the Andover branch of the Kentucky Blood Center, which opens at 10 am, and see if I can donate (sometimes my iron doesn't cooperate). Then I'll head over to my friend's house.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Well, phooey

I just got in from class a little while ago and was trying to use my new University of Kentucky online account that was set up today to get my unofficial transcripts to apply for a job at a local college by Friday (I just learned about it yesterday). Unfortunately, something wasn't submitted when they built my account and I can't access the transcripts at all, and won't be able to until at least a couple of days, meaning I'll miss the deadline. While I could pay $10 and get an official transcript, I'd still have to wait till sometime tomorrow or Friday for that because the older transcripts are on microfilm, hence there needs to be someone at the office who can scan them and send them to me, and technically the HR department at the college had requested a mailed résumé, cover letter, unofficial transcript, and three professional references, although there is an option to upload a résumé and cover letter on their website. While I certainly could do the job, I suspect they have an internal candidate in mind, as it wasn't posted the last time I checked a few days ago, and so I'm going to chalk this up to an omen that the job wasn't going to pan out, get my access for future use, and go on my merry way. Still, it's the first job in awhile that would be a good fit, and I really like their library; I interviewed there years ago. So anyway, I think I missed the boat on this one, and that's my fault. I should have been more vigilant about looking, although in my defence last week I was mostly preoccupied with the snow storm, cold, and just getting to my current job.

I got my airline and hotel confirmation for the Chicago trip today, and went by Office Depot and got a padded lightweight bag with an over-the-body strap for my laptop at a price less than the sleeves alone, which I plan on taking on the trip. I'm so hoping everything like weather, etc., goes off without a hitch. I should have time the first day to go to the Field Museum of Natural History, and then there's the morning of the second day before our seminar for a little sightseeing. On the third day there's a morning meeting and then I'll have to head straight to the airport. But the idea this time is to definitely see a bit of downtown Chicago.

Okay, I have a CT scan of my sinuses first thing tomorrow morning, and should see if I can find the paperwork in case it's needed. I've already pre-registered and paid for my part (which was a bit of an annoyance, because I'm within $47 of my out-of-pocket maximum for the year but had to pay $127 over the phone yesterday. I just couldn't make the clerk understand that I shouldn't pay that amount, and if I did, they might owe me a refund.

I also have to take a friend to an appointment tomorrow, so I've taken off from work for that day. And afterwards I need to go by the pharmacy because another friend got only a partial fill of his medicine and needs more. I am in high demand this week. Friday there's another appointment and Saturday I'm taking two other people, three dogs, and a cat to the vet--in a Taurus. That should be fun. :) But it's nice to be needed.

Okay, on to finding that paperwork. I've never had a CT scan. There doesn't seem to be much to it, but I did want to read their recommendations and make sure everything was as planned. Good night!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

In science news...

Stunning 3D animation reveals how the Sahara fertilises the rainforests of the AMAZON with 182 million tones of dust

Buddha statue reveals remains of mummified monk inside

Rats May Be Exonerated in European Plague, Say Scientists With a Gerbil Theory

More Siberian Craters Prompt Call for Urgent Investigation

'Early peanut intake could prevent allergy'

Blind man sees wife for the first time in a decade - here's how

Nice article

about efforts of librarians to work with agencies and other professionals to serve the needs of the homeless in their communities.

Homeless People Need Libraries, and Libraries Need Them, Too
"I think there are still a lot of punitive policies and a lot of barriers ... rules about the size of baggage you can bring in or policies about odor or no-sleeping policies," said librarian Julie Ann Winklestein, who co-wrote an ALA pamphlet to help librarians better serve people who have already been turned away by other institutions.

The single most important thing libraries can help people do online is find a job, the ALA found. Even fast food restaurants require online applications now. But many libraries still require patrons to have an address and photo identification to get a library card, and then limit the time patrons can spend online.

Librarian Liz Coleman, who serves on a new Homelessness Advisory Committee at the Nashville Public Library, says her co-workers are frustrated they can't help everyone. One regular patron died of exposure; another was hit by a car and died shortly before he was to receive housing.

"It was a feeling of kind of helplessness," she said. "You see these folks every day, so you can't help but care about them. But what are you going to do? You can't take them home with you."
But this is my absolute favourite quote, by Julie Ann Winklestein:
Librarians can't solve people's problems, but we can provide them the resources to solve their own problems.
I recently had an interview at the local public library and asked about how they approached the homeless. I was interested in services and outreach, but instead I think they thought I was afraid for my security, as the adjacent park is full of people on any given day who have no home. I guess I took them aback, or maybe I didn't ask specifically enough to elicit the answer I was looking for. I know the subject is a tricky one for public libraries, as they balance the needs of all patrons and want to provide a welcoming atmosphere for everyone, and some people are afraid of those who live on the streets. But those who are homeless--for whatever reason--are actually much more vulnerable of a population, and if we can partner with agencies and work together to provide the resources needed--whether it's getting a job, getting help applying for affordable housing, getting mental health treatment, or any of the other things that can transform a person's life, then I say, more power to the librarians.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Is it me

or is today going by very sloooowly???

We've got several of our doctors out on a mission trip this week, so the clinic is pretty slow, meaning I have fewer charges to put in. So although I used the time to catch up with library stuff, time seemed to drag. After work I grabbed something to eat at home and tried to use my banking application with much frustration. I don't know if there's a glitch now that I'm running the higher operating system on my phone, or what, but it was very annoying. I was finally able to do what I was trying to do, but only with great effort and circumventing a screen or two.

I helped with a couple of projects [one quick, one tedious yet necessary] over at my friends' house, visited for awhile, watched 'Hart of Dixie' with YKWIA, found a book that had gone missing, helped right a shelf of books that tried to collapse--that sort of thing. But finally I am home and it's only a little after 10:30 but I am ready for some rest and a brand new day. There were several things I found interesting in the news, but I'll have to blog about them later, I'm afraid. But you have a great night.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

I love that even though

I have a handful of TV channels over the digital antenna, one of them is playing The Princess Bride. I love that movie, and even though I do have it (in DVD and VHS), I'll take this opportunity to watch it. They're right past the sword fight, with Fezzik and Westley are going head to head. Now on to Vizzini and the battle of wits....

Going back to bed

as sleet is pelting my windows. Here's hoping for snow over ice, and rain to wash it all away (without flooding). So tired of winter, and really, it's been a decent one until this past week, upon which time Old Man Winter thought, gee, the South isn't getting that much and the New Englanders haven't broken yet, why don't I dump a whole winter's worth of stuff on Kentucky?

This is very well done...

I'm curious as to what YKWIA (who also has a history degree) and Brenda (who has a costuming degree) think of this.

Friday, February 20, 2015

One of my neighbours

has been digging a parking spot out nonstop for over two hours (I don't know how long before I came home) so she can get her car into the spot. She'd had it mostly done, I'd thought, when I got in, but she's still going, way past dark.

I left work early today and picked up my friend and we went by his house to pick up a prescription and then headed to the pharmacy so we could both get our medications. Then we tried to go to the Kroger on Alexandria Drive but there was no place to park and lots of frustrated drivers, so instead we went over to Chinoe's Kroger, got a few things for each of us, and then I dropped him off and came home. My street still hasn't been touched; my parking lot is now more clear than our street. I managed to pull into a parking space that was pretty clear, which is good, because we're looking at significant snowfall tonight, some ice, and some rain. It's all going to come down to what temperature things stay at, to see which we get more of.

Speaking of temperatures, it was -18 degrees here in Lexington. In one of the neighbouring counties, it was in the negative 30s--again, not wind chill, but rather air temperature. My car was a little reluctant to start, but did, and I was able to drive to work for the first time this week.

Plans tomorrow include a possible bigger trip to the grocery, but that will depend very much on the weather. I'd hoped to give blood, but I suspect that will not be possible. If I do get snowed in, I'll just hang out here. I doubt we'll get to play the game Sunday, but perhaps if things aren't too bad.

Okay, I think I'm going to do some things around here. I did dishes and put them away last night, gathered the recyclables, etc., but I need to take them out and straighten up. I feel bad sitting here next to the window while someone works so hard outside.

What a mess that's on the way!

Another Winter Storm
A lot of us are in a band of our forecasted 3-7"+ of snowfall with sleet, freezing rain and rain mixing in. It looks like more snow north and perhaps significant amounts of freezing rain and ice in the southern portions of that forecasted area. This does include Lexington.

In case you missed it and can't watch, but want a recap

'The Comic Book Store Regeneration': The entire gang experiences a lesson in the art of letting go.


T-Mobile Galaxy S5 lands Lollipop to lead this week's Android device update roundup

My phone is running faster. I'm happy.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Big Bang Theory tonight

Made me cry.  It still makes me well up with tears when I think about it.  It was very fitting,  and I'm glad they chose this route.  But it was still sad.  I won't say anything more in case you haven't seen it yet.  But you frankly should try to see it. That's it for me tonight,  I think.  I'm listening to OneRepublic's Native album (specifically,  'I Lived' at the moment).  After that I think it's time to turn in for the night.  Take care,  stay safe. Good night.


I haven't done this for awhile; usually I'm doing well if I get half as many steps in. And this is with a ride home from work and driving to Kroger once I got the car unstuck.


After a co-worker and her family dropped me off at home from work, I managed to get the car cleaned off further, and got it out of the space! I went ahead and headed to Kroger, filled up the car, which was on empty, and then stopped in the store for a few groceries. My street still hasn't been touched, but I handled it pretty well. I almost got stuck again trying to get into the spot next to the one I left, managed to get back out, circled around, and found a spot without any snow and parked there.

Once I got in and put the groceries away, I changed clothes, lit a candle, and updated my computer while I made a couple of breakfast sandwiches. (Yeah, I know, it's breakfast for dinner). And while I ate, I updated my phone, which downloaded Android 5.0 (Lollipop) and is just now finishing up. So I'll have a new operating system to play with, and since I was on Jelly Bean 4.4.2 and never got the 4.4.4 update, I'm happy. We'll see if I have any issues with 5.0. Right now it's optimising the application (apparently I have 445 applications on my phone. I really should take some off, huh?)

Now that the car is free, I plan on giving blood either tomorrow afternoon or Saturday, depending on the wintry mix/rain we're supposed to get this weekend. I'm O+, so while I'm not quite a universal donor, I'm close, and the blood and platelet stock has been hit by cancelled blood drives and the inability for donors to get out and about. I called this morning to check and see if it had been long enough since I donated, and it had. They wanted to go ahead and schedule an appointment, but I didn't know about the car. So, I'll try to drop by as soon as I can. The main office is open till 6 pm tomorrow, but is on the other side of town from me. There's one closer, and I'll check tomorrow to see if the hours are the same. If so, I can make it there after work.

The cold is just crazy. It was -8 today, -22 air temperature a couple of counties over, breaking records. Our high was 7 degrees. Tonight we're supposed to be about -15--not wind chill, mind you, that was in the negative 20s and 30s today. I'm so glad the car started, especially without any gas in it, and I hope the battery holds for tomorrow, too.

Okay, I'm going to go see what I can figure out about my phone's new OS. I'm updating Google Play services now. Some of the settings have changed, so I may need to tweak it a bit. Good night, although I may write some more later.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Get ready for the Big Chill

City Intensifies Efforts To Keep Citizens Safe In Bitter Cold

It's going to be a doozy--temperatures going down to -13 or so, with wind chills about -35 degrees Fahrenheit. Fayette County schools are closed for the rest of the week, and the University of Kentucky is also closed the rest of the week, with only essential (Plan B) employees working. My class was cancelled as well, thankfully.

I lucked out this morning. I got to the bus stop, with some difficulty, and had just sat down at the shelter when one of my co-workers, an orthotist who also has an office over here, stopped and offered me a ride. So I got to work about 9:30, which wasn't too bad, considering the ordeal of digging out the car and getting it stuck. Another co-worker had her husband pick us up at work and drop me off at home, so I didn't have to take the bus home. So now I'm half in comfy clothes (still in my jeans). I need to check on my friends and make sure everything's okay with them. And then, to be honest, I am going to take a nap, the idea being that I will get up and work on some things here in a little while.

Nice to see some humour in response to our major winter storm

Harlan City Police Department Issues A.P.B. For Queen Elsa
"All points bulletin!!! HPD has issued an arrest warrant for Queen Elsa of Arendelle. Suspect is a blonde female last seen wearing a long blue dress and is known to burst into the song "Let it Go!" As you can see by the weather, she is very dangerous. Do not attempt to apprehend her alone."

I am supposed to be at work

I spent over an hour digging out the car and trying to get out of the space, but got stuck half-way out and half-way in, finally managing to dig around the tyres enough to get some traction and get (mostly) in. I've called my boss to let her know I'll be late. I'll be taking the bus, and the next one I can reasonably catch is in about 50 minutes, so I have a few minutes to catch my breath and get ready for the walk over there. It does mean I can't get the medications, but I'm going to check and see if the Fayette County Sheriff's Department is still running their Winter Care programme, where they'll go get them for you. If not, I'll have to try to get there by bus, meaning leaving work really early, because our pharmacy closes at 6 pm. I'll work it out somehow. Looks like I'll get to work about 10 am, or an hour-and-a-half late. But Gods willing, I'll hopefully get there. Okay, time to start walking.

I can't sleep

There are a whole bunch of things I have to do tomorrow, and it's causing some anxiety, because the roads won't be very good, and there are a lot of what-ifs in terms of my car. I'm not even sure it will start, what with the low gas and battery, and then I really have to clean it off, clean off some space behind it (the only thing I can think of for that is a broom--I don't own a shovel, since I live in an apartment), get to work, and then get to the pharmacy. I can just feel all sorts of tension building up, and even a little stomach trouble. I know I'll soldier on, but it's bothering my sleep. So I'm trying do so some deep breathing and relax. Sometimes I get this way when I'm full of expectation. I'm like this when it's time to take a plane somewhere, too. I feel like going out and doing something, anything, right now--clean off the car, go get the gas, even go into work, even though that's hours away, and there's probably a lot of re-icing on the road that doesn't make that quite advisable right now, plus the new snow should be starting soon. So I wait.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Well, I made it to work and back today

and I'm pooped. The official snowfall total for Lexington yesterday was 10.2 inches, or the fourth-largest snowfall from midnight to midnight in our history.

I started out this morning from the apartment at 6:40 am, trudged through snowdrifts the two-tenths of a mile to the bus stop, taking great care to cross the road safely (that is the intersection where I was hit by a car while crossing in a crosswalk a couple of years ago, breaking my toes and ankle). I got there about 7:10. The bus was due about 7:16, but it got stuck in the snow over at Locust Hill and Richmond Road, so I sat there until about 7:45, when the next bus came. We went by the stuck bus when we went back up Richmond Road. I got off at my stop, managed to cross the road without too much trouble, but cars were turning into the lane, so I had to go over a drift up to my buttocks, then slog through the sidewalk, which had snow up to right below the knees. Fortunately I'd worn my jeans and had brought a pair of pants to wear at work. I had brought an extra pair of socks, too, but I wish I'd have worn them on top of the others, because my feet really got cold (it was 3 degrees Fahrenheit outside while I was sitting at the bus stop). When I went to go home, I did wear both pairs of pants and socks, and it really helped (it was also in the low twenties temperature-wise by then). But none of the sidewalks had been cleared, and I stood inside a snowdrift at the bus stop at work, so I got home, peeled off the wet clothes, got into something comfy (but not particularly warm, as I was pretty hot with the exertion, the 2-4 layers over my body, and a balaclava that showed just my eyes. My heart rate was probably up there with someone shoveling snow, and my breathing took awhile to settled down.

I had thought I might dig out the car while the sun was still out, but I just didn't feel up to it. Besides, we're supposed to get 1-3 additional inches of snow tonight, so I'd still have to do it tomorrow. I'll just have to get up early. I just hope the roads are better than this morning, as I really need to go by the pharmacy tomorrow after work, which means I have to get to work during the snowfall--and get some gas, too. But I've been home for about an hour and a half, and now I finally feel normal. I've eaten some lentil pilaf and a quinoa burger, along with an apple, and I think I'll do some reading soon. I did do some yoga yesterday, but I'm not feeling the desire to do any tonight. I've done plenty of exercise today, walking 8,036 steps so far today--well, more really, as I didn't have my phone with me every step. But as far as the yoga goes, I struggled through the poses yesterday (I used to be much better at that), but I did watch a segment after the workout on using props to keep proper alignment. So I'll try that, although I have a mat and strap, but only one block.

Brrr...I've been watching the weather. Thursday has air temperatures at a high of 3 degrees, and -12 degrees for a low. I just hope my car battery will work that low.

Okay, I'm going to go take my contacts out, get comfy, and do some reading. Good night, for now.

Monday, February 16, 2015

As of 4 pm, Lexington was just over 9 inches in snowfall

with snow still falling, so they expect at least 10 inches, but we're within a few hours of the end of the snow. My friend got home, but he had to walk from the closest major artery; even the road that he lives off of, which is a snow route, was snow covered, and the bus driver wouldn't go up it. Neither of us is sure of what to do for tomorrow. He may have to walk back to the same bus stop if it's still as bad, and he doesn't have winter boots--tennis shoes don't do so well in this. I may be taking the bus myself, because I suspect the roads will still be difficult at best.

Fortunately most people are staying off the roads at this point. The authorities have asked people to not go out on the road unless it is absolutely necessary, particularly as it gets dark and visibility will be even worse. As it is, you can't see the lanes on the circle around Lexington, or on the interstates, and a lot of people have gotten stuck and had to hoof it out of there. Tomorrow should be cold, but after that temperatures are going to plummet. We're looking at -11 degrees Fahrenheit (air temperature, not wind chill) Thursday morning, for example. So it's not like the snow is going to melt, and the road treatments are less effective as the temperatures go down.

The airport has had all flights cancelled. Our governor has declared a state-wide emergency. About the only good thing about this snow is it is a high-ratio, powdery and light, so it's not impacting trees and power lines. So I haven't heard of electricity outages at least. Since midnight, the police have been called to over 30 accidents, five of which sent people to the hospital, and assisted over 300 cars stuck and that sort of thing. We're not at an emergency level yet. All city offices are shut down tomorrow. They are discouraging those who don't have to drive tomorrow to do so.

I don't think I'll be driving tomorrow. We'll see if I can make it to work.

For Brenda

and this...

Update on the winter storm that's hitting our entire state

The snowfall so far. It's coming down 1-2 inches an hour. I'm home today, but tomorrow I may be going to work on the bus at the rate this is going.

So about 10:30 this morning

we were sitting just under seven inches of snow. I'm not sure how much is there now, but we were experiencing snowfalls at an inch or two per hour and expect to have snow into the night and into tomorrow. So we're looking at possibly a foot or so. I've been home all day; they're really encouraging people to not head out unless absolutely necessary. I've been communicating with a friend who rides the bus who is at work and should be getting on the bus this very moment, and he's promised to call me when he gets home. I'm glad we were off for Presidents' Day, but tomorrow may be a different story. Plus I really need to get some medicine tomorrow if at all possible. The thing is, it's twelve degrees (that's Fahrenheit) and it's going to plunge down further to about -8 for a low in a couple of mornings. I have about $5 in cash and my car is on empty in terms of gas until I can fill it Thursday after getting paid. So my plan is to get up early tomorrow, check the news and road conditions, then check and make sure the car starts, and if it does, clear it off and try to go into work if the main roads are clear enough, so I can go to the pharmacy. If the roads aren't passable, I'll take some change and take the bus, since there's a stop a little less than a quarter of a mile away from me, and hope to go to the pharmacy on Wednesday. We'll see.

In the meantime, I'm listening to music, reading about bringing balance into your life through yoga and natural foods, and considering taking another nap. I really need to clean up around here, too, but I'm not sure about taking anything out to the Dumpster at this point, at least today.

From a couple of weeks ago

Wise words from a fortune cookie: 'Time is precious, but truth is more precious than time.'

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Today we watched

I enjoyed it. Today we decided to cancel the Call of Cthulhu game because Brenda has a Society for Creative Anachronism event coming up soon and it would give her a chance to prepare, and since we're looking at 7-12" inches of snow in the next day or so, we decided to watch that and then I could get home before any of the bad weather hit. Now they're saying the bulk of it will be between 8 am and 8 pm. I am so glad that we're finally getting President's Day off at the hospital, so most of us won't have to make the commute. Our patients come from five states, and so it would probably have meant lots of cancellations. We're getting more snow than the area north of us, but Tennessee may be getting ice. All in all, I'm glad the hospital was already shut down for the holiday.

A friend of mine has to go to work early tomorrow, but he may miss the problems of the early commute, although tomorrow afternoon may be worse. But he's on the buses, so that may help.

My plan is to stay home, watch DVDs, read, do a little straightening up around here, that sort of thing--basically spend the day alone and make the most of being snowbound. :)

My favourite 'Big Bang Theory' is on

that I've seen so far: 'The Adhesive Duck Deficiency'

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Disheartening, perhaps, but I believe it's true

Diet and exercise alone are no cure for obesity, doctors say: For most of the nation’s 79 million adults and 13 million children who are obese, the “eat less, move more” treatment, as currently practiced, is a prescription for failure, a group of weight-loss specialists says
A group of respected physicians is challenging the common assertion that obesity can be easily fixed by diet and exercise.

For most of the nation’s 79 million adults and 13 million children who are obese, the “eat less, move more” treatment, as currently practiced, is a prescription for failure, these doctors say.

In a commentary published Thursday in the journal Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology, four weight-loss specialists set out to correct what they view as the widespread misimpression that people who have become and stayed obese for more than a couple of years can, by diet and exercise alone, return to a normal, healthy weight and stay that way.

“Once obesity is established, however, body weight seems to become biologically ‘stamped in’ and defended,” wrote Mount Sinai Hospital weight-management physician Christopher Ochner and colleagues from the medical faculties of the University of Colorado, Northwestern University and the University of Pennsylvania.
Everyone agrees that diet and exercise are important, but relying on only that ignores the constant battle those who are or who have been obese have with their biology. More doctors and insurance companies should learn about this and change their practice as a result.


Friday, February 13, 2015


Dog Shows Up at Hospital Where Owner Is Battling Cancer
Call it coincidence or love, but a miniature Schnauzer in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, ended up at the hospital where her owner is battling cancer -- even though the dog was originally 20 blocks away at home.

A surveillance camera in the hospital lobby caught the dog entering through the automatic doors and wandering around.

The dog, named Sissy, belongs to Nancy Franck, 64, who has been at Mercy Medical Center for about two weeks following surgery. Her husband, Dale Franck, 66, had been taking care of Sissy and her brother Barney, also a miniature Schnauzer, back home.

“She was on a mission that night to see her mom," Dale Franck told ABC News today, "but she couldn't find the right elevator to take."

Thursday, February 12, 2015

I've been mostly relaxing

this evening, when I should have been working on the house. I didn't exactly crash, but I did take a nap, using a new application that was free through Amazon today that uses your phone as a measure of how well you're sleeping. It was interesting. I don't think I'd use it every night, but it does give some insight into how much you toss and turn, etc. It's called Sleep, and the unlock key for the paid version is available for free, along with a bundle of various applications worth $140. Just follow the link from the Amazon App Store. I got a few of them. Some had been the free application of the day in the past, so I already had them.

There seems to be a small war going on in my apartment building, one which I plan to stay well clear of. There was a collection of different-coloured sticky notes taped together haphazardly on the front door this morning with all sorts of masking tape, with some sort of missive (I didn't read it, as I was heading to work and was in a hurry) of how dogs bark and it was addressed to whomever complained to the leasing office. There is an apartment with two small dogs who go off at the least bit of noise, something new for our apartment building, as it's always been rather quiet. Now I am a dog person, but I admit, it annoys me. There are other dogs in the building, but you would never know it. But these guys go off the moment someone enters the building. So while I didn't complain, I can understand why someone might have. And we've recently had one of those general 'clean up after your dog' reminders sent out from the leasing office, to be ignored if you don't have pets or clean up after them. So I do wonder if there is anything else going on. Anyway, the sticky notes were gone when I got home today, and I got the impression that they were perhaps taken down by the office, so the person who put it up isn't getting any points as a good tenant, and while I can't be certain it was that apartment, surely the leasing office knew who the complaint was against. When I had a dog, she did not bark. Period. I was very lucky in that regard. And when my friends seriously considering finding another home for one of their dogs, who would probably love to be an only dog, I did not take her because she has a high, shrill bark and goes off easily. I don't mind people having pets at all, but I don't think it's right to assume the rest of the world is wrong because they don't like your pet's barking. The sticky note collection spoke volumes about the pet owner, and it seemed very immature. We're an apartment complex of mostly working people. There aren't a lot of students or the like. Noise isn't generally tolerated. Loud parties do not happen; our courtesy officers are also police officers and will give citations. But more to the point, people are mostly considerate. I turn down my music, for example, if my windows are down, the moment I turn into our parking lot with the car. I don't play the TV or music loud. I think it's reasonable to expect some quiet, especially at night. Now I will say the dogs don't bark constantly--only when someone is going in and out of the building, and that's good, at least. But we'll see if this escalates. My impression though is that the pet owner will probably not be here that long with that attitude.

I just

Slogged through all of Amazon's top 100 free Kindle books,  plus 40 pages of other free ones,  and downloaded about 33, if you count the parts of bundles individually. Then I had to go to 'manage content' to download some of them,  because it won't do more than ten at a time,  apparently. I am now pooped. Good night!  :)

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

I just got in from class

and it was a very good one, mainly on problem-solving. I'm enjoying the class very much, and it has good information and suggestions. I have a great deal of empathy for my fellows, many of whom are dealing with crisis situations and have turned to the class to help cope. Because of the Chicago trip, I am unfortunately going to miss the class that is specifically on self-care and coping, which is unfortunate, but I can get the materials the next class, and that should help. We mostly read through the materials in class and then share our viewpoints and experiences, so it's the latter I'll miss.

I tracked my food today, and while I ate more than usual, it came out to be far more than I should have. If I have any hope of flying and buckling my seat belt on the plane, I'd better cut it down in the next month. Besides, my blood sugar, while not horrible now, was much better when I was eating next to nothing. :) I have done a little exercise this week, walking around the inside of the hospital yesterday for fifteen minutes, like someone might walk around the mall. It was too cold to go out. Today would have been better for outside walking, but we're supposed to have snow tonight, and unfortunately I didn't think about taking a break and going out for one today. But when spring comes I definitely wan to do some walking.

I feel like I need to hang from gravity boots in order to stretch my spine out and maybe get it to relax and pop. I'm not really hurting or anything, but I just feel a little stiff. One of my goals on my health tracker (Samsung Health) is to do some yoga this week. I think it is definitely something I should try. I used to be good at it, or at least decent, but that was maybe 50 lbs ago. So we'll see. I have DVDs and then also workouts on the Smart TV that are basic and good for beginners. I think that may be a good start. I love the A.M. Yoga with Rodney Yee DVD (I also have the VHS, but had to replace it when my VCR went out, because I liked it so much.) But that is meant to energise you in the morning and wake you up. So I'm not doing that tonight. P.M. Yoga, which I also have, is good, but there are a lot of lunges if I remember, and it has someone other than Rodney Yee, someone not as soothing in the voice, etc. :) But I think I will break out the yoga mat tonight and try it before I head for bed, and maybe go through some yoga books as well.

I think

I may have found a way to stay one more night in Chicago,  after all.  It does mean using my credit cards,  which I was trying to avoid. But since this will probably be my last year going,  I'd really like to sightsee.  My bosses have approved the trip,  and I'm just waiting to make sure my backups are in place before putting in my travel request with the committee I'm on, which is paying airfare there and back,  as well as one night at the hotel.  They'll also reimburse me for two days' worth of food and the transportation costs. 

The plan is to fly up the day before the seminar,  take the train to the hotel,  drop off my luggage at the hotel,  take the bus to the Field Museum,  spend time there,  then go wandering for a bit around before heading back to the hotel. I plan to get a three-day pass for mass transit,  so that will save money. Then the next day there's the morning before the seminar for sightseeing,  then the seminar.   We'll probably eat somewhere as a group that night,  then have the meeting the next day,  and head to the airport and fly home afterwards. I'll miss three days of work and one class,  but I think it'll be worth it.  Wish me luck!

Sunday, February 08, 2015

My, I'm weepy today

due to my hormone cycle. I cried during Monster High earlier, and Horns. I was on Facebook just now and there's a group I follow that is called Lost and Found Pets of Lexington, Kentucky. Someone had found a dog who had been hit on New Circle Road and circled back to get it, but it had died. She took it to an animal hospital because it had a tag for a rescue group that usually microchips, and the hospital was going to try to find the owner(s) and break the bad news. There was a picture of a black dog that accompanied the post. The purpose of the group is to find pets, including providing closure when they die as a result of getting lost, but it absolutely tore me up and I started crying. I really am being a bit labile, and animals being hurt or killed is a trigger for me to just go into tears. The second time I watched Dances with Wolves in the theatre years ago, I had to leave during the scene where the horse and wolf die. I hid in the bathroom (as did another woman). I cried when we watched Sounder in school. I refuse to consider watching Old Yeller. As it is, I was almost barred from watching 'Lassie' as a child, and also 'Run, Joe, Run!' I just have a soft spot for animals, and I hate to see them suffer in any way. I hope this family gets some closure. I feel so badly for them. As far as I'm concerned, pets are family. I love the ones in my life, even though I don't have pets of my own (except fish). They are wonderful to have in your life, yet it's so painful when they die. I think that's one reason I still don't have any of my own--when Cerys died, several years ago, I just couldn't bring myself to try to 'replace' what was, for me, the perfect dog. And I don't have the right environment for a dog, anyway--I'm not home enough, although I'm home more than I used to be. Sometimes I think of getting a cat, though. Sometimes.

Just as I was about to turn off the Grammys

I finally saw the new Android ad by Google:

Yeah. It is cute. And I like the message. :) What can I say, I'm an Android girl, and just not into the whole Apple scene.

PS I am also not really into awards shows. They're slow and tedious for the most part. I watched them give out something like three awards an hour, and was really only interested in 'Song of the Year', which was won by the team that wrote 'Stay with Me'--which is a really good song; I was just pulling for Hozier. But it had its moments, and I tuned in just in time to see Hozier do 'Take Me to Church' and then have Annie Lennox come out and finish it with him, then sing 'I Put a Spell on You'. :) So it was okay. And I'm not sure which was weirder--Shia LeBouf's introduction of Sia, or Sia's performance with Kristen Wiig. And I'm somewhat embarrassed that when Paul McCartney, Rhianna, and Kanye West came out, I really didn't recognise the latter. I've just never really listened to his music, and since he got tangled up with the Kardashians I tune out anything about him. I did like several of the performances I saw, while others were well, just okay. But now I think it's time to head on to other things.

We watched this movie today

and it was good. YKWIA had read the book (and I read parts of it). I knew who the murderer was as a result from the get-go, but I didn't actually know the ending (which was apparently different to some degree anyway). Daniel Radcliffe was believable as Ig, and he does a decent American accent, which escapes many Brits (although Australians and New Zealanders tend to have an easier time for some reason. It must be the broader vowels they have.)

Warning: Tangent ahead--
I'm still not sure why Hollywood seems to shy away from casting blond actors for characters who are supposed to be blond (Lee in this movie, for example, but I give you Oliver Queen/Green Arrow from 'Arrow', Captain America and Aquaman from the movies, the younger Charles Xavier from the X-Men movie franchise, etc.) It really bugs YKWIA, and will send him into a discussion I've heard many times.. Even if the actor is naturally darker in hair, they can do wonders with dye. At least The Hunger Games did it right--Jennifer Lawrence, who is blonde, was made brunette for her part, and Josh Hutcherson, who has dark hair, was made blond. Or for 'Sherlock', Benedict Cumberbatch, who has auburn hair naturally goes darker for that role. But for the most part, at best actors might have dark blond hair, bordering on light brown. In fact the only TV or movie characters these days who come to mind who are as blond as the corresponding book character are Alexander Skarsgård's Eric Northman from 'True Blood' (based on the Charlaine Harris Sookie Stackhouse series of books)--and he's Swedish--and it looks to me like his was made blonder for the role, and maybe Chris Hemsworth as Thor, where again, I think they lightened his a bit. So they do sometimes, but other times they just chuck out the character description entirely, it seems.

I know really blond men are in the minority (many more were no doubt blond when young, but their hair often darkens over time, like Brad Pitt or Leonardo DiCaprio). So maybe they need to go to Scandinavia (or Minnesota) for more actors. Or go for the hair dye. I mean, we know there aren't nearly as many actresses who are actually blonde who look it, surely. Why is it okay for women to dye their hair, but not men? But even though there are a lot more dark-headed actors, I'm sure there are blond actors out there who can truly act--but Hollywood seems to just go with names they think will draw in crowds, regardless of looks or for that matter, talent. Anyway, it would be nice if casting directors would consider the physical description of a character that is already fleshed out in a book before casting--especially ones that have been established for decades. If it isn't clear, that's one thing. Not all characters are amply described. And there is often some leeway, just as colour-blind casting is sometimes quite appropriate. But someone like Jason Momoa, just doesn't do it for me as Aquaman, or Stephen Amell as Oliver Queen (Green Arrow), and it just makes YKWIA go off. Of course, he would also keep a continuity manual enforced on shows for all sorts of things. Don't get him started on the inconsistencies of various ages of people throughout the X-Men movies, even when taken independently from the comics, for example. :)
End tangent.

But I digress. Here is a trailer for Horns. I wasn't sure I would like it, but actually, it was quite good, with a mystery blended with odd happenings.

I love 'The Big Bang Theory'

'You look like a talking cupcake.'

Thanks to YKWIA for showing them to me, as I missed this.

When I was a kid

my dad had a sort of hobby room of his own that had ham radios, Morse code keys, oscilliscopes, etc. We had a big tower in the backyard wherever we lived. He built a TV from Heath Kit when I was in junior high, and when we moved from Louisiana to California, we had a CB radio in each car to communicate with one another (although the truckers flirted with my mom over the airwaves). Needless to say, we made regular visits to RadioShack. When I was in high school, I took a computer class--a very new thing, as this was about 1982, and our first computers at the school were IBM PCIIs and TRS-80s (the latter manufactured by company that owned RadioShack, which also owned Tandy Leather, another hobby shop my dad took me into occasionally.)

So I learned DOS and BASIC and eventually got my own computer (an Atari 800 XL, which got me through high school, college, and part of grad school before I had to finally break down and get a PC). Whenever I needed something like an RF modulator or game adapter, or any little electronic gizmo, I went to RadioShack. The last time I remember being in one was in the 90s, at the mall, and even then the employees outnumbered the customers, and were a little overzealous in trying to help to the point where I left after the third person (in a very small store) came up to me, disturbing my shopping, and I gave up and left. I might have been in one since then, but if so, it wasn't particularly memorable. But two of my three stepfathers have also been radio enthusiasts, so I'm sure it remained a Mecca for them in terms of supplies. And I know they sell things for cell phones and have tried to update the shop to the needs of newer generations. But sadly, they've slipped into bankruptcy and are selling off thousands of stores. For which, I must admit, I mourn, as overall I still remember it with affection.

Last days of RadioShack: Fans remember an institution

Saturday, February 07, 2015

YKWIA showed me this earlier, and it looks intriguing

It premieres March 17th.


I didn't get a chance to see this one in the theatre. It comes out on DVD March 6th, though, and I do plan on watching it then. A has expressed an interest in them, and I have the first two on DVD already. Maybe we'll make a day of it.

A productive yet beautiful day

I don't think we quite made it into the 60s this afternoon, but it came very close, anyway. This morning I went to the pharmacy and got some medicine. Then I took a friend by his tax preparer, a woman who works out not too far from my apartment. While he was in there, I sat in the car, parked there on the street, and listened further into my audiobook. I stopped by Tire Discounters and they topped off the nitrogen in my tyres, and then we stopped over by my apartment so I could pick up something. We went back to his house, where I installed their housewarming gift (ten years late, but hey...), and then we made a grocery list, and headed over to the Euclid Kroger, where we parked on the roof and shopped, going down the escalator on the way down and the large elevator for the carts on the way back up. We put the groceries away, and then YKWIA watched some videos on YouTube and the movie we had out from the Netflix DVD queue--Inception, which I very much enjoyed. I didn't find it difficult to follow at all, and it seemed fairly consistent within itself. YKWIA and I agreed that the ending, which was deliberately shot to leave a question in the mind of the viewer, nevertheless is not ambiguous at all, given very clear clues to indicate whether the ending takes place in dream and reality. Anyway, I really liked it. The next one up is technically Lucy, but that is not actually released until Tuesday, which is the day Inception should arrive back at Netflix, so it may bump to the next one, Maleficent.

After the movie, we watched a few more YouTube videos, and then I headed home. Now I'm listening to the radio and just hanging out at home, trying to fix a sticking keyboard. (The Y and U are depressing at the same time, and sometimes the H or 7. I have an ergonomic keyboard, and unlike regular ones, apparently you can't just pop off a key to fix it. Usually the more I type, the better it gets. But I'm doing a lot of backspacing as a result.) I'm burning a lavender and cedar wood candle because my apartment smells like the cigarette that's seeping in through the bathroom somehow from upstairs. It's so strong I sprayed some lavender room and body mist in there. I hope it helps. I hate cigarette smoke. At least it's not cigar smoke. That makes me physically ill and when I'm near someone smoking a cigar I want to just puke on them. Of course, I feel the same way about people who wear strong musk perfume. :)

I also heard from my mother tonight right after the movie ended, and we chatted for awhile, mostly about our shared klutziness (she hurt a finger badly recently). I told her about my upcoming trip and a little bit about work.

Tomorrow we're not playing the Call of Cthulhu game because Brenda has a Society for Creative Anachronism Shire function instead. But I'm going over later than normal to my friends' house and doing the normal housework and then I think YKWIA has some things in mind to do, but I haven't been let in on the plan yet.

I don't have anything particularly exciting lined up this week at work or after. There's class on Wednesday, of course. The week after I'm off work for Presidents' Day, class, and a doctor's appointment.

Okay, I think I'll work on something for awhile, then maybe do some reading or book-listening before bed. I have several 14-day books due on Monday, non-fiction ones, and I'd like to go through them before I return them. Good night, if I don't write again tonight.

Friday, February 06, 2015

I was listening earlier to a really good audiobook on my phone that I checked out from the library

called The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly. I'm in chapter three and am considering buying the book itself, as I really like the writing and the story so far. I think I may listen for a little while longer before I go to sleep.

It's amazing

How wonderful rolling a 20 oz. bottle where water has been frozen into ice can feel when your feet hurt. We're talking instant,  albeit temporary relief,  without drugs.  It's the best recommendation a podiatrist ever gave me.  I keep one here,  one at work,  and there's one at my friends' house,  too. I know come morning it will be stiff and painful again,  but this does help a lot.

Thursday, February 05, 2015

I've shared this before

It's one of my favourite songs about Ireland.

And now, for your random pleasure

But on a more positive note...

'Grimm' has been renewed for a fifth season by NBC.

And then there's this:


Well, I did some checking at the normal rates offered online through the hotel (although there may be a special rate the school can get), and it would be about $190 for the hotel, $30 or so for the museum. Putting in some spending money and transportation costs, and I just don't see how I come up with it at this point. Which is a shame, because I think this is the last year of my appointment. The one time I did have an extra day set up, I got hit by a car and had to cancel the trip entirely due to a broken ankle. Last year I could have used a credit card, but I was only approved for it right before the trip, so the plans and itinerary were already in place. I am beginning to think this is not meant to be.

I've already spent much of my federal refund on bills. I guess that's a better way to be fiscally responsible, anyway. My big splurge was ordering Jin Jin yesterday for lunch, and then eating the other half for dinner. Oh, well.


Since I got off work, I have been running errands. I:
  1. Went to the bank.
  2. Paid my rent at the leasing office.
  3. Went to Home Depot and bought a toilet seat (long story that I won't get into. Suffice to say it is very difficult for a girl when a seat pops apart at the hinge while in use. You tend to slide into the bathtub, given my bathroom's arrangement.)
  4. Got a small housewarming gift I promised almost ten years ago when my friends moved into their house, and it's one that can save lives.
  5. Went to the grocery store and got very healthy food.
Now everything's put away and, most importantly, the new seat is on the commode. (I was going to stop at the apartment when I paid my rent to use the bathroom, and realised that there was no point until that new seat was in place. Guys, really, you have it lucky, with the whole stand-and-pee thing. So I'm sitting down to the computer with some of the Kroger Mediterranean bar items (Tuscany bean salad, mozzarella balls, and artichoke hearts). I'm also eating a bit of a multigrain baguette. Yummy!

I found out today that when I go to Chicago next month, I won't be staying near the University of Illinois-Chicago campus, as I have in the past, but in a hotel downtown, Club Quarters on Wacker at Michigan. Which means I'll be near lots of neat stuff to see in the heart of the city. I really don't see how I can afford to stay an extra day and go to the Field Museum, but I would love to. I'm going to work out the finances and see if there's any way. In the meantime, I've got a query into how expensive the hotel room would be for an extra night. That's the main expense--the flight and the one night at the hotel will be paid for by the regional office. Keep your fingers crossed for me!!!

Wednesday, February 04, 2015


I finally have home broadband and Wi-Fi again. I've hooked up the desktop, laptop, TV, and printer (the phone, tablet, and Kindle only connect when I want them to, but the others either stay on, on in the case of the laptop, connect as soon as I start her up. Oh, and I should do the Roku box in the bedroom, so I can watch Netflix or listen to Pandora, etc.

Again, yay!

And no, I didn't get the TV cable service back. So it's just digital antenna channels and then the streaming services. :) But my bill is a third of what it was.

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

I was feeling a little like not being alone tonight

for some reason (it's pretty common; for all that I am an introvert, I have trouble with being alone sometimes). So I headed over to the library and its Wi-Fi connexion so I could blog and maybe check out some things. It turns out one of my co-workers is sitting at the table next to me, but I haven't wanted to interrupt her conversation with someone where they're working on some major computer programming stuff. I do miss her; I've always liked her. She is from Thailand and always made things a little brighter at work. I've wondered how she's been doing.

Oh, their tutoring session is over and Upsorn noticed me and we got to talking. I told her all about the new plans for the hospital becoming a outpatient medical center. She was very encouraging. We hugged. It was great to run into her. And her daughter's a teenager now--I remember when she was born. It's amazing how time flies! I'm so glad I came over here tonight.

That seems to have satisfied my need to socialise. I think I'll wrap up here and maybe look through some materials and see if I want to check anything out. I should go home and relax and maybe do something fun. I feel like re-reading To Kill a Mockingbird, to be honest. :) I may just do that. I may blog some more later, but in case I don't, have a good night. And keep your fingers crossed for me--the IRS says they'll deposit my refund tomorrow. Since I have 22 cents in the bank, that would be really, really nice. Especially as I still have some bills to pay and my brakes are starting to make a noise like the pads are wearing down. Mind you, I've had both sets of brakes worked on in the last two years, so I don't know why they would be, but I should check it out. I'm hoping to do so the 16th, as we are actually off work for President's Day this year. Yay!

This made me so happy when I saw it earlier today

Harper Lee to Publish First Novel in Over 50 Years: 'To Kill a Mockingbird' sequel finds an adult Scout Finch returning home to visit father Atticus
After more than 50 years, author Harper Lee will follow up her beloved, and only, book To Kill a Mockingbird with her second novel, Go Set a Watchman, set for release on July 14th, publisher HarperCollins announced today.

The recently unearthed book is a quasi-sequel to Lee's 1960 classic, but as the author explained in a statement, Go Set a Watchman was actually written first and would eventually inspire Mockingbird. "It features the character known as Scout as an adult woman and I thought it a pretty decent effort," Lee said. "My editor, who was taken by the flashbacks to Scout's childhood, persuaded me to write a novel from the point of view of the young Scout. I was a first-time writer, so I did as I was told."
I adored To Kill a Mockingbird, having first read it in high school during a class where we read a story and then followed up with watching the movie that was based upon it (we also watched Franco Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet, the 1946 version of Great Expectations, and The Great Gatsby with Robert Redford, among others). But To Kill a Mockingbird was riveting, both in book and film form, and I did wonder what happened to Scout when she grew up. It sounds like we may finally know.

So mark your calendars for July 14th (Bastille Day, if that helps you remember). And I hope it comes out for the Kindle as well, because Mockingbird finally came out in that format this past autumn, and I do have it. Ooh, it really is a lovely thing that it's coming out soon!!!

Sunday, February 01, 2015


This morning I used the bonus points Kroger had loaded onto my card out of the blue for being a good customer,  plus the ones I've earned on the grocery runs this month,  to the tune of 90 cents of a gallon.  I filled the car,  which was on empty, but not on the gas light yet, for a ridiculous price--and yes,  I have photographic evidence,  taken right before I did my happy dance.  I actually had to have them refund me the rest of $20 because I overpaid. It was only $16.70 for a whole tank. Yay!  That's the most I've ever saved.

By the way

I didn't watch the 'Big Game' with all its hype, commercials, and half-time show, but I did see this a few days ago, and apparently the folks at Budweiser, given their success last time, decided you can't go wrong with puppies and Clydesdales. And you know what? They're right. Here's their 'Lost Dog' commercial from this year's Super Bowl:

I do love this song

'The Ballad of Accounting', which was written by Ewan MacColl. Here is his version, along with Peggy Seeger:

...and then this is the Scottish group The Battlefield Band, whose music I really like, with their version:

(although my favourite Battlefield Band song, one of their own, is 'The Dear Green Place', as story of Glasgow):

I know, I've posted these before. But they're still great. :)